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  • Author: Mohamed Saleh
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This is a well documented book focusing on the Omani Ibadhi religious elite and their role in the socio-cultural, historical and political development of the north- western Indian Ocean basin between the period around the partition of Africa and the Second World War. The book is composed of seven chapters, plus 23 pages of references and notes to sources, and 19 pages of bibliography that help the reader map out the contours of the discussion and aid scholars interested in pursuing the same line of research.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Africa, Arabia
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Affairs
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: This edited volume has been published at the end of a year in which African actors have enjoyed almost unprecedented global attention. Protest movements across North Africa, but particularly in Egypt and Tunisia, captured headlines during the Arab Spring, and Time magazine named 'The protestor' as their person of the year for 2011. The world's newest state was born in South Sudan in June. The second half of the year was dominated by a violent revolt and civil war in Libya, against the backdrop of massive western intervention. As the year drew to a close, environmental diplomats and activists from across the world convened in Durban in December, as the possibility of a legally binding global successor to the Kyoto Protocol on climate change was hammered out. One might think, therefore, that the continued warnings from Africanists that most analyses of the continent's inter - national politics continue to 'occur largely from a vantage point of detachment, exclusion and aberrance' (p. 2) might start to ring a little hollow.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Africa, North Africa, Egypt, Tunisia
  • Author: Tom Kabau
  • Publication Date: 06-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Institution: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: This article examines the dilemmas and opportunities of the African Union, a regional organization, in implementing the responsibility to protect concepts in respect to forceful intervention to prevent or stop the occurrence of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Article 4(h) of the Constitutive Act of the African Union specifically mandates the Union to forcefully intervene in a Member State in such circumstances. Although the African Union has successfully resolved some situations where peaceful negotiations or consensual military intervention was sufficient, there has also been failure by the Union where such means fail or are inadequate. Such instances include the Darfur conflict where peacekeeping was insufficient, and recently in Libya where the African Union openly opposed enforcement of no fly zones to protect civilians. This article is of the view that the African Union's failure to implement Article 4(h) of the Constitutive Act, even in deserving situations, may have been aggravated by the failure to institutionalize the concept of responsible sovereignty within the Union's legal framework and processes. Despite the forceful intervention mandate, there are also provisions that affirm the principles of non-interference. The AU system therefore fails to resolve the dilemma between sovereignty and intervention. Sovereignty preservation remains as an effective legal and political justification for non-intervention by the AU. This has promoted a subsequent trend of greater sovereignty concerns by the Union. Institutionalization of the concepts postulated under the emerging norm of responsibility to protect within the AU framework and processes can contribute to the elimination of the legal and political dilemmas of forceful intervention by the Union.
  • Topic: Crime, War
  • Political Geography: Africa, Libya
  • Author: Thomas Cargill
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The World Today
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: The next big thing: Once known only for hunger and war, Africa's moment has arrived
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States, Europe, Middle East
  • Author: Dickson Ogbonnaya Igwe
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are an international commitment to the reduction of poverty and to promoting human development across the planet. The goals are measurable targets attached to a timeframe for making a difference in the lives of billions of people. In September 2000, over 189 member states at the United Nations General Assembly endorsed the MDGs. The goals are also recognition of the fact that 60 years after the end of World War II, the world remains far from achieving the ideals of peace and prosperity inspired by the end of that global conflict. The MDGs provide a strategic framework for developing, implementing and monitoring poverty-eradication programs at national and international levels.
  • Topic: Development, War
  • Political Geography: Africa, United Nations
  • Author: Bruce Baker
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Postconflict is, unfortunately, not always a suitable descriptor of societies where a peace agreement has been signed and a transitional government installed. Violence does not stop on the day of the public signing of the treaty. Large numbers of unemployed and (in the short term) unemployable youths, often armed or with access to arms, loiter on the streets. They have had little opportunity to gain education in the preceding years, but have learned that violence is the key to accessing resources and status. The former security forces or informal armed groups and militias that they have been part of have, over many years, provided a whole range of roles: social support group, family, employer, provider, escape ladder from rural poverty, and source of status. Hence, whether these groups are officially disbanded or not, the youths look to their former general-patron and their ex-fighting colleagues as their surrogate “clan” in times of trouble. Violence may well live on in their minds, dreams, responses to conflict resolution, attitudes toward women, and methods of securing resources. No wonder, then, that the crime rates escalate in the cities where they now live, and no wonder that some militias remain in the countryside, looting and robbing, despite the official end of the war.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, War
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Daphné Richemond-Barak
  • Publication Date: 11-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: This article examines the intersection between the private security and military industry and the emerging framework of global administrative law ('GAL'). I explore in this article one aspect of this intersection, namely the use of GAL to create a taxonomy of the industry's regulatory schemes. The industry is characterized by a fragmented and decentralized regulatory framework, which has yet to be presented in a complete and orderly fashion. This article fills the gap by applying GAL's methodology to the private security and military industry. Using the industry as a case study in GAL, I identify (1) international formal administration (the United Nations Working Group on Mercenaries); (2) distributed domestic administration (contract and domestic legislation); (3) hybrid modes of administration (multi-stakeholder initiatives); and (4) private modes of administration (industry associations and codes of conduct). By emphasizing – but not limiting itself to – hybrid and private modes of administration, this article describes what is an increasingly complex manifestation of global governance. Its purpose is to highlight GAL's potential in understanding and contending with the growth of the private security and military industry.
  • Topic: War, Law
  • Political Geography: Africa, United Nations
  • Author: Jon Temin
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: In a historic referendum that took place in January, the people in southern Sudan voted whether to remain part of a united Sudan or to secede. Possibilities of creation of the first new state in Africa since 1993 were high. The article discusses the events leading up to the scheduled vote, possible outcomes, and responses to the post-referendum situation in the region.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Africa, Sudan
  • Author: Heike Larson
  • Publication Date: 04-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Objective Standard
  • Institution: The Objective Standard
  • Abstract: Infidel is a heroic, inspiring story of a courageous woman who escapes the hell of a woman's life in the Muslim world and becomes an outspoken and blunt defender of the West. Ms. Hirsi Ali takes the reader on her own journey of discovery, and enables him to see, through concretes and by sharing her thought processes, how she arrived at the conclusion that Islam is a stagnant, tyrannical belief system and that the Enlightenment philosophy of the West is the proper system for human beings. In Part I, Ms. Hirsi Ali describes her childhood in Muslim Africa and the Middle East. With her father imprisoned for opposing Somalia's communist dictator Siad Barré and her mother often preoccupied with finding food for her family, young Ayaan and her siblings grew up listening to the ancient legends their grandmother told them-legends glorifying the Islamic values of honor, family clans, physical strength, and aggression. Born in 1969 in Somalia, Ms. Hirsi Ali moved frequently with her family to escape persecution and civil war, living in Saudi Arabia, Ethiopia, and Kenya. At a colonially influenced Kenyan school, she discovered Western ideas, in the form of novels, "tales of freedom, adventure, of equality between girls and boys, trust and friendship. These were not like my grandmother's stark tales of the clan, with their messages of danger and suspicion. These stories were fun, they seemed real, and they spoke to me as the old legends never had" (p. 64). Forced into an arranged marriage, she was shipped to Germany to stay with distant family while awaiting a visa for Canada to join the husband she didn't know. At age twenty-two, alone and with nothing but a duffle bag of clothes and papers, she took a train to Holland to escape the dreary life of a Muslim wife-slave. "It was Friday, July 24, 1992, when I stepped on the train. Every year I think of it. I see it as my real birthday: the birth of me as a person, making decisions about my life on my own" (p. 188). In Part II, Ms. Hirsi Ali shares her wonder of arriving in modernity, and her relentless effort to create a productive, independent life for herself. After being granted asylum, she worked menial jobs, learned Dutch, became a Swahili translator, earned a vocational degree, and finally graduated with a degree in political science from one of Holland's most prestigious universities. An outspoken advocate of the rights of Muslim women, she was elected to the Dutch parliament in 2003, as a "one-issue politician"-she "wanted Holland to wake up and stop tolerating the oppression of Muslim women in its midst" and to "spark a debate among Muslims about reforming aspects of Islam so people could begin to question" (p. 295). She became a notorious critic of Islam, at one point daring to call the Prophet Muhammad a pervert for consummating marriage with one of his many wives when she was only nine years old. In 2004, she made a short film called Submission: Part 1 in which she depicted women mistreated under Islamic law raising their heads and refusing to submit any longer. Tragically, the film's producer, Theo van Gogh, was brutally murdered by an offended Muslim, who left on van Gogh's body a letter threatening Ms. Hirsi Ali with the same fate. Since 2004, Ms. Hirsi Ali has had to live under the constant watch of bodyguards, often going into hiding for months at a time. Although the straight facts of her life are in and of themselves admirable, Ms. Hirsi Ali's intellectual journey as presented in Infidel is truly awe inspiring. This journey begins in Africa in the disturbingly dark world of Islam-with its disdain for thought and reason, its self-sacrificial ethics, and its corrupt, tyrannical politics-and ends in the West with her having become an outspoken champion of reason and freedom.
  • Topic: Government, War
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa, Canada, Germany
  • Author: Grant W. Jones
  • Publication Date: 04-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Objective Standard
  • Institution: The Objective Standard
  • Abstract: In Winning the Unwinnable War, editor Elan Journo and fellow contributors Yaron Brook and Alex Epstein consider the ideas and events that led to 9/11 and analyze America's response. Arguing that our nation has been made progressively less secure by policies based on "subordinating military victory to perverse, allegedly moral constraints" (p. ix), they offer an alternative: grounding American foreign policy on "the moral ideal of rational self-interest" (p. 188). This they accomplish in the space of seven chapters, divided into three sections: "Part One. The Enemy," "Part Two. America's Self-Crippled Response to 9/11," and "Part Three. From Here, Where Do We Go?" In Part One, in a chapter titled "What Motivates the Jihad on America," Journo considers the nature of the enemy that attacked America on 9/11. With refreshing honesty, Journo dispenses with the whitewashing that often accompanies discussions of Islam and Jihad, pointing out that the meaning of "Islam" is "submission to Allah" and that its nature "demands the sacrifice of not only the mind, but also of self" (p. 33). Says Journo, the Jihadists seek to impose Allah's will-Islamic Law-just as Islamic teaching would have it: by means of the sword. "Islamic totalitarians consciously try to model themselves on the religion's founder and the figure who is held to exemplify its virtues, Muhammad. He waged wars to impose, and expand, the dominion of Islam" (p. 35). In "The Road to 9/11," Journo summarizes thirty years of unanswered Jihadist aggression, beginning with the Iranian takeover of the American embassy in Tehran in 1979. Throughout, Journo criticizes the idea that influenced the actions of America's leaders during this time-"realism"-which he describes as eschewing "[m]oral ideals and other broad principles" in favor of achieving narrow, short-range goals by sheer expediency (p. 20). Because of the nature of their own ideas, says Journo, realists are incapable of understanding the Jihadists and thus incapable of understanding how to act with respect to them. "The operating assumption for realist policymakers is that (like them) no one would put an abstract, far off ideal ahead of collecting some concrete, immediate advantage (money, honor, influence). So for realists, an enemy that is dedicated to a long-term goal-and thus cannot be bought off with bribes-is an enemy that must remain incomprehensible" (p. 21). Journo indicates how realism was applied to the Islamist threat in the years leading up to 9/11: Facing the Islamist onslaught, our policymakers aimed, at most, to manage crises with range-of-the-moment remedies-heedless of the genesis of a given crisis and the future consequences of today's solution. Running through the varying policy responses of Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and Bill Clinton there is an unvarying motif. . . . Our leaders failed to recognize that war had been launched against us and that the enemy is Islamic totalitarianism. This cognitive failure rendered Washington impotent to defeat the enemy. Owing to myopic policy responses, our leaders managed only to appease and encourage the enemy's aggression (p. 6). After 9/11, President George W. Bush shied away from the realist policy of passively reacting to the ever-escalating Islamist threat-and instead adopted the foreign policy favored by neoconservatives. "In place of 'realism,' neoconservatives advocated a policy often called 'interventionism,' one component of which calls for America to work assertively to overthrow threatening regimes and to replace them with peaceful 'democracies'" (p. 118). Two chapters of Winning the Unwinnable War are devoted to dissecting this policy, "The 'Forward Strategy' of Failure" by Brook and Journo (first published in TOS, Spring 2007) and "Neoconservative Foreign Policy: An Autopsy" by Brook and Epstein (first published in TOS, Summer 2007). In the first of these chapters, Brook and Journo consider Bush's interventionist plan, the "forward strategy of freedom." On the premise that democracies do not wage wars of aggression, Bush launched two campaigns of democratic state building in the Middle East-in Afghanistan and Iraq. In 2003, Bush exclaimed, "Iraqi democracy will succeed-and that success will send forth the news, from Damascus to Tehran-that freedom can be the future of every nation" (p. 54). But neither Iraqi freedom nor American security was achieved by Bush's "forward strategy" of enabling Iraqis and Afghanis to vote. Because of democratic elections, Iraq "is [now] dominated by a Shiite alliance led by the Islamic Dawa Party and the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI)" (p. 54), and a "further effect of the elections in the region has been the invigoration of Islamists in Afghanistan" (p. 57). . . .
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Africa, Iraq, America